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Post-op Painted Turtle

Posted by tinsley hunsdorfer at Nov 05, 2012 04:05 PM |

Nov. 5, 2012: A female Western Painted Turtle is recuperating in the care center after a large pus plug was surgically removed from her head last week. The plug was part of an ear abscess that probably developed because the turtle had low vitamin A. Now that the pus has been cleared out, the abscess is responding to treatment and the turtle should make a full recovery.

Post-op Painted Turtle

Western Painted Turtle - Tinsley Hunsdorfer

A female Western Painted Turtle is recuperating in the care center after a large pus plug was surgically removed from her head last week. The plug was part of an ear abscess that probably developed because the turtle had low vitamin A. Now that the pus has been cleared out, the abscess is responding to treatment and the turtle should make a full recovery.

A lot of people have pitched in to get the turtle back on her feet: She was found crossing a road in Tigard and turned over to the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife; ODFW then sent her to Portland Audubon, and we contacted animal-surgeon extraordinaire Dr. David Barno of VCA Rock Creek Animal Hospital to perform her operation.

Care center staff and volunteers have taken over the turtle’s post-op care, which includes regular antibiotic injections and daily wound cleanings.

While the turtle is doing well, it’s too late to release her this year – other wild turtles have already started hibernating – so she will spend the winter at the care center and then head back into the wild this spring.

The Western Painted Turtle is one of Oregon's two native turtle species, along with the Western Pond Turtle. Both are imperiled.

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